• While most of the Valkyria games have made it to the West, the third game in the series has always eluded Western gamers. Rather than answer the demand for an HD Remaster, Sega wanted to revive the series entirely. To this end, Sega had developer Media Vision make an action RPG spin-off called Valkyria: Azure Revolution. And now it’s come to the West, although it has strangely dropped the ‘Azure’ from the name. But Media Vision was unfortunately unable to bring any success to their efforts, as Revolution has too many issues to be a good game.

    The plot is actually disconnected from the main series of games, although it takes place around the same time frame. It’s told as a story from the past from the perspective of a history teacher and their student. A country named Jutland was liberated from the Kreuz empire by a group now known as the Five Great Traitors, who while enacted events that eventually liberated the country, also betrayed it, all in order to get their personal revenge on the Empire. This is their story. As an anti Valkyrie ground based unit, you’ll carry out missions against the empire from a third person action RPG perspective. You can also pull up a secondary action wheel to use skills, fire you firearms, or throw grenades. Otherwise, the rest of combat is done in real-time. Most of combat is melee-based, from the series staple of classes like shocktroopers, scouts, shield bearers, and a new class, sappers. The sappers are basically pure magic users who spend more time using magic to weaken defenses and fight from a distance. Ragnite alchemy magic uses MP, but it does recharge over time when you crouch.

    It sounds good on paper, but the execution is severely lacking. Even the story, which seems interesting from it’s initial concept of dark revenge, unravels in terrible ways. Even if you ended up liking the story, the gameplay will get in the way of your desire to watch it unfold. The gameplay could have been at least decent with a pure action genre setup, but apparently the first demo released in Japan received negative feedback since it didn’t feel enough like an RPG. As a result, Media Vision decided to inject more RPG elements into the game. Media Vision should have ignored these people, as going from a turn-based strategy RPG with action elements hybrid to it’s inverse did more harm. The result is that you have an action shooter that mostly melee-based, but is hampered by turn-based mechanics destroying the pacing. Each attack in the game needs a cool-down period, so you already don’t have the ability to consistently attack and pull off combos. Even though the cool-down is short, it still does enough damage to disrupt the flow of the game. Revolution feels slow as result of this. Other elements of the game translate to this spin-off poorly. Instead of having units level up by class and that class collectively gaining experience, only the characters you bring into battle will gain experience. This means some missions will need certain characters that you’ll need to spend extra time grinding on free missions, which can be tedious. There’s also a method of earning skills that is a shameful knock off of the Sphere grid, since it can’t just give you the skills, but you have to inject the right amount of item to get the right amount of experience to earn the skill. Getting new armor seems to be less progressive and more experimental, since you’ll need materials to make new armor that doesn’t progressively boost stats so much as it let’s you earn various passive bonuses like fire protection.

    Valkyria Revolution had some potential, but even Media Vision couldn’t do a good job. The game would have worked a lot better as a non-rpg, and a pure action game, perhaps done by a developer such as Platinum Games. Media Vision doesn’t often make stinkers, but they can’t always make winners I guess. But now I worry that the franchise will never see a proper follow-up. For years to come at least. If Sega really wants to make this series come to the forefront, they need to have a more decisive focus, instead of knee-jerk responses to negative feedback. Maybe next time, if there is a next time. Cannot recommend.

    Valkyria Revolution - Review
    Sega's attempt to make the series more successful might have done more harm than good. This game had potential, but it was squandered because of several questionable design decisions.
    Our Score4
    Positives
    • he game runs decent on Xbox One.
    Negatives
    • The gameplay is beset by a litany of issues stemming mostly from questionable design decisions.
    • The story of the game seems interesting,but is executed poorly.
    4Overall Score
    Reader Rating: (1 Vote)
    -1.3

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